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FNM Deputy Leader Dismisses Action Group Criticisms

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...Tommy Turnquest explained that the Action Group is an independent arm of the FNM free to make its own statements.

FNM Deputy Leader Dismisses Action Group Criticisms

FNM Deputy Leader Dismisses Action Group Criticisms







By Candia Dames

Nassau, Bahamas

3 April 2006







Months after party officials who had emerged from a tumultuous period surrounding the FNM leadership fight vowed to avoid airing their dirty laundry in public, the FNM Action Group has triggered a new round of controversy.


But party deputy leader Brent Symonette said that it was unfortunate that the Action Group released a statement criticising what it claimed was the "cavalier and high-handed manner in which the leader of our party, the FNM, is finding and appointing candidates to carry our party’s banner into the next general election."


Mr. Symonette dismissed such claims as untruths.


"I have been with Mr. Ingraham so far to at least three, if not four meetings with the constituency associations and we have another four or five planned for next week," he said.


"We plan to meet each and every constituency and lay out in full detail the process by which we intend the constituencies to follow. In all of those meetings that I have attended, there have been full and frank discussions."


He denied that the party had made any final decisions on who its candidates will be in the general election.


"I am a member of the candidates committee," Mr. Symonette said. "I know of no nomination of candidates by the FNM to date for the upcoming election. That process is ongoing and at the appropriate time the candidates committee will meet, ratify and announce the candidates."


The Action Group in its statement said it was concerned "with the lack of respectful review given to sincere FNMs who were campaigning in the various constituencies for the past three years and have developed warmth and bonding with the residents of these constituents."


The statement came just several days after party leader, former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham, said he will begin announcing candidates in May.


When contacted by The Journal, Mr. Ingraham was unavailable to comment on the statement issued by the Action Group.


When he was leader of the party, Senator Tommy Turnquest explained that the Action Group is an independent arm of the FNM free to make its own statements.


The Action Group is headed by Oswald Marshall, a longtime member of the FNM. The Group, reportedly, seeks to represent the views of "the ordinary people" in the party.


Others have characterised the group as the party’s militant arm.



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